A major union of retail employees successfully organized three New York-based sex shops Monday.
The Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union represent employees in the service, retail and food processing industries. It announced it unionized employees at three Babeland locations in New York in a Friday vote. Babeland sells an assortment of sex toys and goods primarily aimed at female consumers.
“This is the only adult sex shop that is organized,” Union President Stuart Appelbaum, told The New York Times. “And I think that’s significant.”
Employees at the three stores voted 21 to four in favor of the union. They listed wage and training as primary issues that led them to seek union representation. The training, they hope, will help new employees better handle unruly customers. Employees have allegedly been asked invasive questions and harassed for working at a sex shop.
The union can help promote more transparency when it comes to hiring, promoting and disciplinary practices. The employees want more support from management when dealing with problematic customers. For instance the employees want caller ID so they can identify people who call in to make threats.
The employees also want the company to update computer files so transgender employees are listed by their chosen name and genders.
Babeland was founded in 1993 with its first store in Seattle. It has since spread to several states across the country, including New York. It did not respond to a request for comment by The Daily Caller News Foundation.
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